It is stated in the book that Weeden's grave has been dug up, body stolen and tombstone broken. Later

...Fred Lemdin, night watchman at Rhodes, declares it was mixed with something very like the skrieks of a man in mortal terror and agony

This happens when Charles

is still alive

but presumably before he forbids Curwen from digging up graves.

Is the quote above actually referencing Curwen summoning Ezra to torture him and revenge himself? If so, how come Charles,

who was still alive

allowed him to do so?


Another angle

Charles probably wasn't against digging up a corpse and resurrect it, since it was the same thing he did with Curwen itself! As described in the book Charles had a lot in common with Curwen itself. And as Curwen and his friends, he shares their "curiosity for knowledge" but lacks the resolve to deal with the inhumans results, like the deformed monsters in the pit. This is what made Curwen kills Charles.


Maybe Charles forbid it but Curwen did it anyway. Maybe Charles didn't know about it until later.

As a general rule, a person A often finds it hard to imagine everything that a person B might possibly want to do, consider which of those many things would be permissible, and then issue regulations listing permitted and forbidden actions.

As another general rule, the effective authority of a person A over a person B can vary with various circumstances from 100 percent effective to 0 percent effective.

  • Yes, I do get the impression that Curwen turned out to be a lot more powerful and sinister than Charles was expecting. It's even to be expected for someone in that situation - Charles was manipulated strongly by Curwen both before and after his return, but Charles still was his own person. IMHO both of them encountered more than they expected - Curwen didn't expect his descendant to be so ethical, and Charles saw his ancestor through rosy glasses, quite possibly thinking, "He's my ancestor, how bad could he really possibly be? The rumors I've heard are just rumors or at least exaggerated." Mar 4 '19 at 12:53

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